Kilifi County is legendarily known to be the best tourist destination in Kenya. Besides the great coastal weather, contemporary Swahili architecture is yet another reason why holidays are never the same in the region. The Vipingo Club house designed by Arch. Urko Sanchez is an ideal example of such, located 20 to 25 miles from Shanzu, Nyali and Bamburi beaches with a panoramic view of the coastal offshore. Sitting on a 2,500 acre piece of land on the Vipingo Ridge, the 977sqm residential golf development offers a touch to the contemporary Swahili architecture that is characterized by high ceilings and traditional décor that best fits the conveniences of the 21st century.
The facility is a 25 KM drive from the Mombasa- Malindi highway in Kilifi. It can also be accessed by air through the Moi International Airport, Malindi Airport as well as its private airstrip.
Constructed during the furnishing stages of the golf course, the Vipingo Club House became a success following architect, Urko Sanchez’s three day benchmark in Ireland. Today, the facility is one of the most tranquil, serene and an epitome of relaxation to families and friends who gather in the restaurant and the rooftop bar for either breakfast, lunch or dinner.
The Vipingo Club House was designed based on the client’s needs of a building that would not exceed 1000m2. In response to this requirement, the architect included a rooftop bar that enables users to enjoy the serene atmosphere that surrounds the Mombasa Island.
Not only does the club house sit at the center of the golf course, it is also situated at the highest point on the site, indicating a strong presence in the landscape and offering expansive views to the hilly context. The structure is arranged in an irregular composition of rectilinear volumes, providing a variety of interesting views of its surroundings from diverse angles. Large rectangular openings that form the shape of the building break the monotony of the surfaces paving way for exterior doors and windows while the interior features some arched thresholds.
The architect of this outstanding building used coral stone bricks and carved wooden doors in the interiors while the exterior was finished with lime plaster. The coral stone bricks and wooden doors is typical of the Arabian architectural design and structures, a community that inhabited the coastal region in the 18th century and thus greatly complements the locale of the building.
Environmental features in this club house include solar panels that are eco-friendly besides using the photovoltaic panels that reduce energy use. In addition, it has enough space for changing rooms, a pro shop, office bar and a kitchen that is spacious and luxurious. Other sustainable features that distinguish the building include the cross ventilation and a shady courtyard. The cross ventilation captures the breeze from the Indian Ocean and thus bringing an atmospheric getaway for tourists who visit Vipingo House Club. The shady courtyard adds some sense of tranquil to the facility.
The Club house that sits on two 18- hole golf courses is the central meeting point and hub of activity at Vipingo Ridge due to its features such as the reception area, courtyard, shop, waiting area, restaurant, kitchen, offices, restrooms, changing room, waiting area, verandahs and a rooftop terrace. The scenic and tranquil environment features an iconic Moorish-inspired clubhouse and leisure facilities including Kenya’s top-ranked PGA championship golf course. The setting and amenities epitomize luxury living.
Despite lack of prior knowledge in the world of golf, Architect Sanchez managed to successfully complete the Vipingo Club House in 2009.